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Brussel Sprouts with Cranberries

I know what you thought when you saw “Brussel Sprouts”, but I promise these are really good. I’ve never been a big fan of brussel sprouts, however I was determined to find a way to like them since they are so good for you. I think I accomplished that with this dish. The key to this is to get them carmelized, so that the natural sugars come out, and make them yummy.  My husband said to me, “Who would think I actually would ask you to make brussel sprouts.” That was a huge moment, because he didn’t really like brussel sprouts either.  Like most things, I try to make them easy, so anyone could make them. Give them a try.

  • 16 oz brussel sprouts, quartered
  • 1 c fresh cranberries
  • 2 – 3 tbsp vegetable broth to toss the sprouts and berries
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl combine sprouts, cranberries, and seasoning. Toss to coat ingredients well. Spread out brussel sprouts and cranberries on sheet pan. Bake in oven for 20-30 minutes, stirring half way through. They will be done when they are fork tender. The cranberries will have burst and shrunk in size, That is a good thing. Drizzle with maple syrup and stir. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Berries and Cherries Crumble

I wanted to make us a treat, but nothing too time consuming, or hands on preparation. I wanted something different, something with fruit. So, I went to my freezer. I almost always have frozen fruit in my freezer. They’re great for smoothies, and fruit crumbles. You don’t have to let them thaw – Time Saver. You can use just about any frozen fruit. This is what I had on hand.

For the berries and cherries:

  • 4 c triple berries (blackberry, blueberry, raspberry)
  • 2 c dark pitted cherries
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 2 tbsp paleo all-purpose flour (see website)
  • 3 tbsp maple sugar

For the topping:

  • 1/2 c blanched, sliced almonds
  • 1/2 c paleo all-purpose flour (see website)
  • 1/2 c almond meal/flour (see website))
  • 1/4 c maple sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 4T butter or ghee, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

For the berries and cherries: Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, making sure everything is well incorporated, and coated. Transfer to a 8×8 baking dish.

For the topping: put all the ingredients in a bowl, with a bowl break up butter so the mixture is in small clumps. Scatter the topping over the berries/cherries in an even layer. Bake until the topping is golden brown and the berry/cherry juice is bubbling up through the topping, about 30-40 minutes.

Top with whipped coconut cream, or whipped cream if you do dairy.

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All-Purpose Seasoning

I like to make up different seasonings to add a new dimension to the flavor of the dish. Each mix I make gives a dish a new flavor profile, making it unique. So far I’ve shared my Mediterranean and Southwestern. Today its the quintessential All-purpose mix. Hope you enjoy the flavor.

  • 2 tbsp Italian Seasoning
  • 2 tbsp Himalayan Salt (optional)
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried mustard
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper

Measure all ingredients into a mason jar. Shake. Sprinkle. That’s it. Try it on any protein or vegetable you like. This seasoning will transform your dish.img_0601

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Butternut Squash and Apple Bisque

This recipe came about because I had this butternut squash on hand and felt like some homemade soup. I found some apples and thought this sounded like it would be good together. This bisque smell so good. Serve with a side salad and you will have a very satisfying meal.

  • 1 medium-sized butternut squash peeled and cubed into 1 inch cubes
  • olive oil
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 t freshly grated nutmeg
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 honey crisp apples, peeled and cubed into 1 inch cubes
  • 4 cups of vegetable stock
  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • chives, minced for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On sheet pan combine butternut squash, apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Drizzle olive oil over ingredients on sheet pan. Stir, so that all the ingredients are covered with oil and the seasonings. Bake in oven for 20-30 minutes, until you can smash the squash with a fork.  By roasting the squash and apples, along with the spices the flavors develop to a cohesive, luscious deliciousness.

Transfer squash and apples into a large dutch oven, (large pot) over medium heat. Add the chicken stock, coconut milk, and maple syrup. Simmer (Do not boil). This is where all the flavors meld together. Before serving blend into a food processor, or high-speed blender. Remember to only fill either appliance half way with the hot ingredients. Because of the heat there is expansion, and you don’t want to blow the tops off your appliance, and get burned. Be patient, it’s worth the wait. Ladle into bowls, and garnish with chives.img_0598

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Turkey Club Lettuce Wraps

This recipe was another “chopped” moment. “Chopped” is the ingredients I have in my “basket” and limited time. This wrap was a winner.  Of course, anything with bacon and avocado is yummy.

  • Butter lettuce leaves
  • Bacon ( uncured, nitrite and nitrate free)
  • 1 Tomato
  • 1 Avocado
  • Sliced turkey breast
  • Mayonnaise (If I don’t make my own, I use Primal Kitchen Chipotle Lime Mayo)

Line a baking sheet pan with aluminum foil. Place bacon on a pan and put into oven. Turn oven on to 400 degrees. There is no preheating. ( I love this method for cooking bacon. There’s no splatter, and I can usually make an entire package at once. Yay!) When bacon is about half way cooked to desired crispness, turn bacon. This is when I line a plate with paper towels to put the cooked bacon on. Let the bacon rest.

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Assembling the lettuce wrap is easy. Just like any other kind of wrap, try not to overfill with goodness. It will just make it hard to handle.

This is how I layered mine: lettuce, mayo, turkey, bacon, tomato, and avocado. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.img_0183

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Banana Chocolate Chip Bars

This recipe came about because I had 3 overripe bananas that I didn’t want to throw out. I’m glad I didn’t, because these are delicious.This bar is very tender, not heavy at all. This is a perfect little treat.

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  • 2 c paleo all purpose flour (see website)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 c coconut oil
  • 1/4c butter or ghee
  • 1/2 c honey granules
  • 2/3 c maple sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 c (about 3 medium) mashed bananas
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 c dairy free chocolate chips
  • 1 c chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 15×10 sheet pan.

Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl. Beat butter, coconut oil, honey granules, maple sugar, vanilla extract, egg and bananas until creamy. Add flour mixture in to banana mixture, until well combined. Fold in chocolate chips and pecans. Spread batter into sheet pan.

Bake for 20-30 minutes until golden brown and toothpick comes out clean from the center. Cool completely in pan. Cut into bars. Makes about 40 bars. Serve. Enjoy.

 

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Chicken Salad Wrap

I made this chicken salad from the leftover roasted chicken the night before. It’s just as good this way, as it was the first time around. You don’t even feel like you are eating leftovers, or as I like to think of them as planovers.

  • 3c diced roasted chicken
  • 1/4 c diced onion
  • 1/4 c diced celery
  • 1/2 c dried cranberries
  • 1/4 c chopped pecans
  • 1/2 c homemade mayonnaise
  • 2 t stone ground mustard
  • pinch of sea salt, and pepper

Combine all ingredients, refrigerate for at least an hour. Serve. Enjoy.

I sometimes use butterhead lettuce for the wrap, however, this time I used paleo wraps. I like both.Chicken Salad Wrap

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Roasted Chicken

I love the way the house smells when I’ve got a chicken roasting in the oven. It’s nice because you don’t have to babysit the chicken while it’s cooking. When all my three boys were still at home I would cook two chickens at once. It’s just as easy to cook two as it is to cook one. Now it’s me and my honey so there is no need for two, unless I have some planovers in mind. Planovers – intentional leftovers for other dishes. So today I’m going to roast a whole chicken, and then tomorrow I’ll make some chicken salad. I’m already looking forward to lunch tomorrow.

  • 1 whole chicken,  3-5 lbs, size depends on how many you intend to feed
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Mediterranean Seasoning( you can find this on my website)
  • 1 onion ( I like sweet or vidalia)
  • 5 stalks of celery
  • 1 lb of baby carrots
  • 10 garlic cloves, peeled
  • kitchen twine

Remove the chicken from the refrigerator 30 minutes before roasting. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Season the inside of the chicken with the all purpose seasoning and stuff chicken with some of the onion, celery, carrots, and garlic. Place the chicken into a roasting pan on top of the remaining onion, celery, carrots, garlic and seasoning mixture. The vegetables make a natural fragrant rack for the chicken. Sometimes I throw in some potatoes for good measure. Cook the chicken at 400 degrees for 25 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees. Continue to cook chicken 25 to 45 minutes, depending on size of bird.

The chicken is done when the internal temperature reads 165 degrees between the thigh and the breast. Allow the chicken to rest before carving.

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Chipotle Lime Deviled Eggs

I probably make deviled eggs once a week. They make a great little snack, and they are so tasty. These have a little kick and smokiness to them. They are not your typical deviled egg, but they are so good. When I make them I only make 6-8 eggs, otherwise I’d keep eating them. You can make them look as fancy as you want. For everyday I just use a zip lock bag with the end cut off to pipe the yolk mixture in the egg white. For guests, I’d probably use a cake decorating tip. These were made for just me and my honey to have a snack. He loves the bacon on these.

  • 8 eggs hard boiled, and peeled
  • 1/2 c mayo (I used Chipotle Lime)
  • 1 strip of cooked bacon, chopped

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

I was searching the archives and I came across this recipe. This was my first “treat” post and still is one of my favorite cookie recipes. This is a great recipe to let the kids make. I can remember making cookies when I was about 8 or 9 and still enjoy making them today. Have some fun and make a family moment. I hope you enjoy.

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  • 2 1/4 c paleo all purpose flour (see website)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 c butter
  • 1/2 c coconut oil
  • 3/4 c maple sugar
  •  1/2 c honey granules
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 c chocolate chips
  • 1  c pecans, chopped

Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt into a small bowl.

Beat butter, coconut oil, maple sugar, honey granules, vanilla, and eggs until creamy.

Gradually add in flour mixture. Fold in chocolate chips and pecans. Refrigerate for 15-20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Take cookie dough out of refrigerator and spoon/scoop out onto ungreased baking sheet. I like to use silpat or parchment paper on my baking sheets. That way nothing sticks.

Bake until golden brown 11-13 minutes. Cool for about 5 minutes, then eat. Enjoy.